Zimbabwe legislator says Zimbabwe must adopt the Kagame effect to stop child pregnancies but Chiwenga says we cannot adopt laws of other countries


THE VICE PRESIDENT AND MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. GENERAL RTD. DR. CHIWENGA):  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  The Hon. Member asked a very pertinent question but I suppose the question is in the form of a suggestion to say from this august House, what is it that all of us can do? 

When it comes to immoralities in society, this is no longer what we treat as Ministry of Health and Child Care.  We come up with policies and that is why we presented in this august House Mr. Speaker, that we cannot have the issue of having children of 12 to 13 years going on their own to get contraceptives.  We are on record saying this cannot be accepted, neither can we have children to say they consented when they are 16 years; we also said that is not acceptable.  We go to majority age; 18 years.

Therefore, as the law, we have pushed and this august House agreed. It is now a law that below 18 years, they are all children and this is what we must stick to.  Now comes the issue of children being abused at school or lack of moralities, children start having children based families; that cannot be accepted; it is not morally correct.  So, we are starting from this august House that we all have constituencies; we must use the structures from the kraalhead to the headmen, councillors, to make sure that people are educated.  It is not for the Government to try alone, because these children have parents.  They have both the father and mother in the house.  What are we doing as parents?

Go to any other organisation like civil society or whatever, it starts from what is it that we are doing?  This is a matter that we must take back to our constituencies for parents, first of all to have the responsibility.  Secondly, it would be followed by where that child is also going to be morally raised, that is schools; from ECD going up.  This is the education system.  We need to have programmes in all our schools to teach our children. 

When we all grew up, the majority of Hon. Members here, we did not have televisions and neither did we have radios but now children watch television; they just switch off the volume and watch, that is where they pick up wrong things. We need all of us to take the task as ours and not as a task for the Ministry of Health and Child Care alone.  I thank you.

HON. DR. LABODE: Hon. Minister, the nation has tried, parents have tried and you have even brought a Bill, the Medical Amendment Bill saying you will arrest parents who do not take kids to institutions for treatment.  While we want to believe that we can control this thing, it has run away from us and we cannot control it.
We want to think we can do a church business to deal with this matter; it has run out, it has become a scourge, it is an epidemic, it needs men and women to stand otherwise we are losing children.
Minister, it might be time for us to adopt the Kagame effect, those who do not know, Kagame is the President of Rwanda.  When Kagame saw that things were getting out of hand…

THE HON. SPEAKER: What is your supplementary question?

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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